Los Angeles, California
Image © Tracy + David, Stills and Motion
First Place – Commercial
ASMP: What was your inspiration for taking this photo/video?
Tracy + David: We were shooting imagery of a camper van around the West in stills, motion, and with a drone, and spotted this great curvy road in the trees while heading to a location in the mountains of Northern California. We thought it would make an interesting image from above, with all of the shapes and textures of the trees. We are always looking for places that might benefit from an aerial perspective, and love finding unexpected locations like this.
ASMP: What type of setting do you prefer?
T+D: We are explorers – we can’t get enough of the outdoors, and think by showing people the outdoors, the way we see it, it will inspire people to be active, get outside and live a fuller life.
ASMP: Is there anything unique about your style or approach?
T+D: We are a husband and wife team. With both of us shooting and collaborating, we’re more creative, we get more coverage, and therefore more content. When we shoot, we work in concert with each other, playing off one another, each shooting something different, yet totally complimentary. We feel it improves the work exponentially. One of us might be shooting the main image, while the other might be shooting motion clips, or checking out a different angle, or a new way of looking at something. For us, it’s about finding the moment, but with two people who are passionate about what they do, and two cameras going, we can find more special moments and much more memorable imagery. Since we shoot both stills and motion, our style of work makes us adaptable to any situation. With both of us shooting at the same time, we can also produce a lot of work – really as much content as possible for our clients.
We’re also both former photojournalists, who learned to find the moment in everything. We always say our background as photojournalists was the best bootcamp, because we learned how to photograph anyone and tackle any project, no matter how challenging. We were also taught from the beginning to never stop until we got the picture, and we still follow that mantra today.
As former athletes – Tracy was a swimmer and David was a soccer player – that love of sports and being active inspires and informs everything we do. Our backgrounds as athletes and photojournalists really prepared us to work harder than we thought possible, to push ourselves to exhaustion, and then go just a little farther.
ASMP: What type of lighting did you use for this image?
T+D: We utilized natural light at sunrise on a semi-overcast day.
ASMP: How long have you been shooting this type of photography?
T+D: We got our UAS Part 107 drone certification a number of years ago, and fly as often as we can.
ASMP: When did you join ASMP and what do you find most valuable about your membership?
T+D: David joined ASMP in 2007 and was previously a board member in the Ohio North Coast chapter, and both of us joined the Los Angeles chapter in 2011 when we moved to Southern California. We’ve found our memberships to be a great resource over the years. When we first left our newspaper staff photography positions over 10 years ago, ASMP helped us gain much-needed business and workflow skills. We’ve also been fortunate to have gotten to work with some wonderful clients who found us through ASMP’s Find a Photographer. Throughout the pandemic this past year, we found ASMP to be a huge resource – with portfolio reviews, frequent webinars, and town halls, that have helped us get our work in front of potential clients, stay relevant, and stay connected to others and the industry during such a challenging year.
ASMP: What kind of gear do you use?
T+D: In regards to drone photography, we currently use DJI and Autel drones.
ASMP: What do you know now that you wish you had known when you first started your career as a photographer?
T+D: We wish we had known more about how to run a business. When we left our staff photography jobs at newspapers, we spent a significant amount of time learning the business side of things. We wish we’d taken some business classes (especially marketing classes!) in school, as the transition would have been easier!